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  1. #16
    Spider-Fan Since '95 WebSlingWonder's Avatar
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    Jack, why do you have such a haggling against a shared universe? Not everyone wants Spider-Man to be in complete isolation. When it works, it works well of course, but being isolationist is not the end-all and be all to Spidey.

    And also, you're bashing the other Marvel heroes as if they're beneath Spidey. People happen to like those other heroes, you know.
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  2. #17
    Astonishing Member Revolutionary_Jack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mister Mets View Post
    This is a weird thing about Spider-Man, but the character works better when he doesn't get respect in-universe.
    I mostly agree but with the caveat that Spider-Man's appeal is to be irreverent and even a little disrespectful of the rest of the Marvel Universe, so he can be a figure who challenges the big teams and even speaks truth to them.

    Gail Simone pointed this out when Far From Home came, she asked where was Spider-Man the wiseacre, the guy who could talk back to the big heroes. 616 Spider-Man used to have that, Ultimate Spider-Man had that when Bendis wrote him, but he's been really softened and Mickey Moused in the MCU. In Ultimate Spider-Man, near the end and in Death of Spider-Man and Ultimate Fallout, Peter Parker became the moral center of that world. He was the one who made the Ultimates feel ashamed of themselves. And that to me, is a good way for Spider-Man to work. JMS did that in CIVIL WAR where Spider-Man rejecting and condeming Reed and Tony for their cowardice, made him a moral center, which lent him turning for Captain America work.

    The MCU is definitely the worst example of placing Spider-Man in a superhero hierarchy to the point that the movies seem to have literal contempt for the material of Spider-Man's adventures. The MCU's attitude to Spider-Man is that those adventures don't matter and count, and what counts is the MCU stuff...whereas James Gunn in the Guardians movies invests importance to the solo adventures of his team. Villains like Vulture and Mysterio aren't allowed any of the dignity and virtues they had in the comics, where Vulture was a genuinely smart inventor who got screwed over by Bestman (and Bestman was unsympathetically shown for doing so), Mysterio is a great artist and genius who misapplies his talent to criminal ends. In the MCU, they are made embodiment of lower class Randian ressentiment of social betters like Iron Man purely based on the logic that Iron Man is a protected character whose out-of-universe mascot status prevents his character and his actions from being reviewed fairly and addressed directly by characters.

    To me the most disgusting moment in the entire MCU is Iron Man's whole "below my paygrade" comment. The thing is, the movie doesn't allow Peter to respond, challenge or correct Tony for that, nor does Tony admit he was wrong to say that. There was no attempt to walkback a comment that is truly wretched and bone-chillingly irresponsible. Imagine in real-life if those soldiers who stopped that terrorist attack on that train in Paris went "they are below my paygrade"?

    That's the extreme example of the kind of mentality that this whole superhero status/hierarchy thing operates at, and Spider-Man Homecoming f--king normalized it.

  3. #18
    Moderator Frontier's Avatar
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    I think Spider-Man should be major when it comes to what he primarily deals with, in terms of rescues, fighting Supervillains, and in generally fighting street crime. He should be the premier hero of New York swinging around and actually getting stuff done when @$%^ hits the fan.

    I don't think he needs to be major on the same level as The Avengers. But said Avengers should still respect him for what he does and for all the times he's helped them in team-ups.
    Quote Originally Posted by Snoop Dogg View Post
    spider-man should come back to the avengers as their janitor
    That's basically how Waid's Avengers treated him.

  4. #19
    Astonishing Member Revolutionary_Jack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by WebSlingWonder View Post
    Jack, why do you have such a haggling against a shared universe?
    Because it's gone from being a curiosity to the only game in town. And it tends to affect stories in a negative way, and far from opening up new stories, a shared universe by and large makes everything an Avengers story, a Justice League story, and eventually it makes things a Tony or Cap story, or a Superman or Batman story.

    Look at Ultimate Marvel, it's by and large a SHIELD story since everything was tied to SHIELD and Fury's shenanigans to the point that Nick Fury was the overall protagonist of the Ultimate Universe. And that definitely hurt the longevity and variety of stories there. Ultimate Spider-Man escaped that because it was the one title where it didn't center on Fury, and the one story where Fury was regarded critically.

    Not everyone wants Spider-Man to be in complete isolation. When it works, it works well of course, but being isolationist is not the end-all and be all to Spidey.
    I agree in principle but in practice the number of stories with Spider-Man on the Avengers which provide major Spider-Man moments are close to zero. And in the case of Avengers, it's not a very democratic team book since it all devolves into being a Tony/Cap/Thor story eventually.

    And also, you're bashing the other Marvel heroes as if they're beneath Spidey. People happen to like those other heroes, you know.
    I like other Marvel heroes and characters too, I just don't like the idea we think of solo stories and solo heroes, or standalone characters as being lesser just because they aren't connected.

    The Avengers were interesting in the 70s and 80s when it was a second-string title, and went through high turnover stuff. It's less interesting after Bendis arrived and made them Marvel Justice League. I did like what Hickman did with it, which was mostly hollow out the Avengers and make them into a puppet for the Fantastic Four (a gutsy thing to do since the FF had fallen by the wayside in corporate branding but Hickman made them essential and at the center again).

  5. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Revolutionary_Jack View Post



    I mean that's my problem with Marvel in general, it's far less democratic than DC where in the Justice League or whoever you will have a story where someone on the smaller part of the team gets to save the day, and not every story is the Superman and Batman or Wonder Woman show. But in the Avengers, it's almost always a story about the Big Three, or a story about love affairs between the middle tier group that drives the action.

    There have been plenty of stories where a smaller character gets to save the day. And the Avengers was about taking under utilized characters and turning them into something bigger. The Justice League was about taking DC's already big characters and that club was always a lot harder to break into than the Avengers.

    Hell, you yourself said that Marvel has been able to develop more titles beyond their flagship books than DC has.

  6. #21
    Astonishing Member Revolutionary_Jack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Z View Post
    There have been plenty of stories where a smaller character gets to save the day.
    Not in the modern era I think. The days where Rick Jones played a big part in ending the Kree-Skrull War are long gone.

    Hell, you yourself said that Marvel has been able to develop more titles beyond their flagship books than DC has.
    I said

    I don't think Spider-Man should go to Batgod level ridiculousness, where Batman has become so overexposed that there's really nothing more to do or say with that character, and in the case of DC, Batman has hampered them properly developing other characters. I mean Batman is the biggest title in the comics market but Marvel is the bigger publisher than DC, which seems to be because Marvel has had more success in developing titles beyond the flagship than DC has. I mean on a Doylist level, Marvel is more democratic as a publisher, but on a Watsonian level, i.e. In-Universe, DC is more democratic. It would be nice to have it all, right?
    I was simply wondering if you can have a situation where it can be democratic in both the Watsonian and Doylist sense. I believe so.

  7. #22
    Astonishing Member Inversed's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Revolutionary_Jack View Post
    I agree in principle but in practice the number of stories with Spider-Man on the Avengers which provide major Spider-Man moments are close to zero. And in the case of Avengers, it's not a very democratic team book since it all devolves into being a Tony/Cap/Thor story eventually.
    There is still a paradox to it all when you try to look at it too hard. Spider-Man is a popular character, he's been around for a long time and people feel he should get some attention in-universe among the superhero community, so put him on the Avengers. But they don't want him to lose his underdog status, and to take all the attention away from the other characters, so just have him be around or for comedic relief. Bendis' Avengers is really the only time we got to see him on the team for a significant amount of time, and I thought he was used decently well, wasn't really a major focus but bounced off the rest of the cast pretty good. (And I would say JMS and Slott both made great use of his Avengers status in their books). Hickman's Avengers he was almost immediately replaced by Otto, the Mighty Avengers he actually proved very effective, especially during the Axis crisis, and he left the Unity Squad in the first issue. Waid's Avengers did make a good reason for him to be involved, being the new funder through Parker Industries, the problem was how he was mainly treated as an ineffectual dope and punching bag for Nadia "Loves Everyone" Pym (all for a repeated joke that never made sense)

    I like other Marvel heroes and characters too, I just don't like the idea we think of solo stories and solo heroes, or standalone characters as being lesser just because they aren't connected.
    But the thing is, I wouldn't say this is really about solo heroes being lesser because they don't connect to other characters because that's far from the truth. I mean really, no matter how hard you try, you can't look that way with Spider-Man, especially 616 Spider-Man. ISSUE 1 of ASM is him trying to join the Fantastic Four, he pops up in so many other books, and others pop up in his all the time. And then you have Marvel Team-Up, which is a whole book of just Spider-Man interacting with other MU characters. Pretty much everyone has interacted with him at some point or another, he's been everywhere. And I think that's what makes this question of the OP most interesting, because based on his history, it is understandable why some would wonder why it is not more respected or recognized among the community given his relationships, no matter what they may be exactly.
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  8. #23
    Moderator Frontier's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Inversed View Post
    There is still a paradox to it all when you try to look at it too hard. Spider-Man is a popular character, he's been around for a long time and people feel he should get some attention in-universe among the superhero community, so put him on the Avengers. But they don't want him to lose his underdog status, and to take all the attention away from the other characters, so just have him be around or for comedic relief. Bendis' Avengers is really the only time we got to see him on the team for a significant amount of time, and I thought he was used decently well, wasn't really a major focus but bounced off the rest of the cast pretty good. (And I would say JMS and Slott both made great use of his Avengers status in their books). Hickman's Avengers he was almost immediately replaced by Otto, the Mighty Avengers he actually proved very effective, especially during the Axis crisis, and he left the Unity Squad in the first issue. Waid's Avengers did make a good reason for him to be involved, being the new funder through Parker Industries, the problem was how he was mainly treated as an ineffectual dope and punching bag for Nadia "Loves Everyone" Pym (all for a repeated joke that never made sense)

    But the thing is, I wouldn't say this is really about solo heroes being lesser because they don't connect to other characters because that's far from the truth. I mean really, no matter how hard you try, you can't look that way with Spider-Man, especially 616 Spider-Man. ISSUE 1 of ASM is him trying to join the Fantastic Four, he pops up in so many other books, and others pop up in his all the time. And then you have Marvel Team-Up, which is a whole book of just Spider-Man interacting with other MU characters. Pretty much everyone has interacted with him at some point or another, he's been everywhere. And I think that's what makes this question of the OP most interesting, because based on his history, it is understandable why some would wonder why it is not more respected or recognized among the community given his relationships, no matter what they may be exactly.
    I think the issue of him being recognized is different then him needing to be on an A-list team like The Avengers.

    Because, yeah, it really doesn't make sense that the hero community would treat him like dirt like they have been portrayed as in the past, but the counter to that doesn't necessarily mean he needs to be on The Avengers or out there on a team.

    Frankly I am of the opinion that Spider-Man doesn't really work, at his best, in a team setting. He can bounce off characters well, but functionally he doesn't really work on a team and trying to make him into a team character just doesn't work, whether you do it with Avengers, random teen heroes, or other spider characters.

  9. #24
    Astonishing Member Revolutionary_Jack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Inversed View Post
    There is still a paradox to it all when you try to look at it too hard. Spider-Man is a popular character, he's been around for a long time and people feel he should get some attention in-universe among the superhero community, so put him on the Avengers. But they don't want him to lose his underdog status, and to take all the attention away from the other characters, so just have him be around or for comedic relief.
    Well in the original "Why Spider-Man can't be with the Avengers" story that Stan Lee did in an ASM Annual, the reason Spider-Man doesn't stay with the Avengers is that he's too moral. Like they sent him to find the Hulk (which as gang initiation rites go, is very much in the Walter Hill territory) but Spider-Man feels bad when he reverts to Bruce Banner and then lies to the Avengers about failing the mission.

    The Doylist reason is that the Avengers weren't an exciting or interesting team at the time. And putting Spider-Man in Avengers didn't help either title very much. Because obviously the Avengers can't make too big a difference in Spider-Man's life, and Spider-Man has little bond or connection to figures like Vision.

    But the thing is, I wouldn't say this is really about solo heroes being lesser because they don't connect to other characters because that's far from the truth. I mean really, no matter how hard you try, you can't look that way with Spider-Man, especially 616 Spider-Man. ISSUE 1 of ASM is him trying to join the Fantastic Four,
    Issue #1 of Spider-Man also has J. Jonah Jameson and the start of their long relationship. Obviously Lee and Ditko in that first issue were setting off paper boats on a pond to see which one would stick and last longest. On the whole Spider-Man's relationship with Jonah, and so his personal story as Peter Parker became by far the most defining feature of the stories going forward as opposed to Spider-Man being part of the shared universe. Maybe if Spider-Man didn't sell he could be folded into the FF as a side character, not unlike how Hulk's stories and villains (like the Ringmaster) were repurposed when his original series went under.

    People need to be reminded of this these days, the shared universe as per Lee and others, was a glorified dumping ground to use as many IP as Marvel had and market and make it prominent, it was never entirely about good storytelling. Steve Ditko for instance bristled at Stan's attempts to constantly force the FF and Johnny Storm into the stories. Ditko wasn't opposed to the odd team-up but he certainly felt that Spider-Man was largely a solo and standalone story.

    And then you have Marvel Team-Up, which is a whole book of just Spider-Man interacting with other MU characters. Pretty much everyone has interacted with him at some point or another, he's been everywhere.
    That was done for the benefit of other characters rather than Spider-Man himself. Spider-Man as a flagship character and its smaller satellite titles could be used to launch lesser known characters. This was the reason the FF showed up in Spider-Man's early issues. Like for instance, Monica Rambeau the first female Captain Marvel was launched in a Spider-Man annual that Stern wrote. An Annual is almost always filler so Stern thought he could use it to try out a character to take the mantle of Captain Marvel who had just died.

    And I think that's what makes this question of the OP most interesting, because based on his history, it is understandable why some would wonder why it is not more respected or recognized among the community given his relationships, no matter what they may be exactly.
    And I think Doylist reasons ultimately matter more than Watsonian ones. It matters if you think a more integrated shared universe opens more stories as opposed to solo stories. In truth each approach opens some stories while closing others, and there's always a trade-off. I think on the whole the solo stories provide a more complete Spider-Man than the shared universe one.

  10. #25
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    Spider-Man is an underdog character. It never works for me when other heroes treat him with great reverence, or when he's fighting alongside the Avengers.

    Quote Originally Posted by Revolutionary_Jack View Post
    It wasn't that way for the longest time. At heart, Avengers is a trashy team of rejects who can't sell their own stories because they are, with few exceptions, not especially interesting characters. That's how the Avengers began as
    That is absolutely not what the Avengers began as. Thor, Iron Man and Ant-Man headlined Journey into Mystery, Tales of Suspense and Tales to Astonish at the time Avengers launched.

  11. #26
    Astonishing Member Revolutionary_Jack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lee View Post
    That is absolutely not what the Avengers began as. Thor, Iron Man and Ant-Man headlined Journey into Mystery, Tales of Suspense and Tales to Astonish at the time Avengers launched.
    They are not comics with their name on it. Strange Tales was headlined by Doctor Strange but that's not his title and he didn't really command every story in it either.

  12. #27
    Fantastic Member Lapsus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lee View Post
    Spider-Man is an underdog character. It never works for me when other heroes treat him with great reverence, or when he's fighting alongside the Avengers.
    Getting more respect doesnt necessarily means that he needs reverence or everyone has to bow to him, at the same time, highly disrespect towards him doesnt works for me neither because he is a veteran hero and most of the others big names know him.

    Sometimes comes for me like a forced underdog.

    I do agree that respect doesnt mean that he needs to join the avengers or having the Batman status, respect can be gained with his own universe and with the superheroes closest to him.

    Marvel Knights and other Street Levels and the Fantastic Four, this characters should always come first in his relationships with superheroes before any avenger, even some x-men (but not everyone).

  13. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Revolutionary_Jack View Post
    They are not comics with their name on it. Strange Tales was headlined by Doctor Strange but that's not his title and he didn't really command every story in it either.
    They were the headliners of those series. Their names and images were on the covers. People were buying those comics for those characters.

  14. #29
    Astonishing Member David Walton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lee View Post
    They were the headliners of those series. Their names and images were on the covers. People were buying those comics for those characters.
    Yes and no? Dr. Strange, for instance, shared Strange Tales with Nick Fury before getting his own book. So some fans might have been buying for S.H.I.E.L.D., some for the sorcerer supreme, and others for both. Same is true of Hulk, Captain America and Iron Man.

  15. #30
    Astonishing Member Revolutionary_Jack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lapsus View Post
    Getting more respect doesnt necessarily means that he needs reverence or everyone has to bow to him, at the same time, highly disrespect towards him doesnt works for me neither because he is a veteran hero and most of the others big names know him.

    Sometimes comes for me like a forced underdog.

    I do agree that respect doesnt mean that he needs to join the avengers or having the Batman status, respect can be gained with his own universe and with the superheroes closest to him.

    Marvel Knights and other Street Levels and the Fantastic Four, this characters should always come first in his relationships with superheroes before any avenger, even some x-men (but not everyone).
    The problem is that some writers work it in so that the Avengers disrespect Spider-Man for "saving the little guy" or going after small-time crooks. Which is not just disrespectful but sociopathic. In the superhero community, if you think that going after big time supervillains makes you better or greater than the ones who go after the criminals you think is beneath your powers to do so...then you are basically getting into the mentality that special forces soldiers are bigger than the infantryman, cop, first responder and that attitude is something nobody in real life, not in the special forces or anywhere else, would ever espouse.

    The biggest embodiment of this is the "below my pay-grade" line in Homecoming. Obviously you need to justify why Tony Stark doesn't go after the Vulture or take care of all villains since otherwise there won't be stories to tell for any other hero. But there are more elegant ways to go about doing it.

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